A 78-year-old Cartersville motorist reportedly found out the consequences of not complying with an officer’s orders after his disagreement about the reason for a traffic stop of his vehicle ultimately led to his arrest.
James Welton Shealy Sr. was charged with Willful Obstruction of Law Enforcement Officers and Failure To Obey Stop Sign or Yield After Stopping, both misdemeanors, after a Saturday, June 15, incident near Shealy’s home on Dabbs Drive.
A Cartersville Police Department report said Shealy’s actions before the arrest included striking an officer with a car door and knocking the officer’s body camera to the ground during an attempt to restrain him.
The officer reportedly was patrolling the area of Douthit Ferry Road and Pine Grove Road “when I observed a gray GMC Yukon with Georgia tag fail to stop at the stop sign” June 15 about 8:44 p.m.
The officer reportedly started following the vehicle, activated emergency lights to initiate a traffic stop, and stopped the Yukon on Dabbs Drive just off Pine Grove Road.
“I then approached the vehicle, making contact with arrestee (Shealy). I identified myself, the agency I work for and the reason for the stop,” the report said. “Mr. Shealy then stated, ‘I’m not gonna argue with you but that’s horse (expletive).’
“I then advised Mr. Shealy that I do have a dash camera in my vehicle and it did record the offense. Mr. Shealy stated that he would like to see the video and I explained to him that if I decided to write a citation for the offense, he would have his day in court to watch the video and I then asked if he had his driver’s license.”
The officer reported the suspect said he had his license and “then opened his door and struck my body with it.”
“I then closed the door on Mr. Shealy’s vehicle and told him that he could not step out of his vehicle. Mr. Shealy then put his vehicle in drive and stated, ‘I will get out of my car so you better draw your damn pistol.’”
The suspect then pulled the vehicle forward about 3 feet “and then jumped out of his vehicle and reached backward toward his waistband.”
“I then stepped forward and grabbed Mr. Shealy’s right hand and he immediately pulled away from me and told me to let him get his driver’s license.
“I told him it was too late for that and grabbed his arm again. Mr. Shealy then began moving and attempting to resist me.”
The officer then reported the suspect “managed to knock my body camera to the ground during this incident.” The officer was able to push the suspect against his vehicle, place him in handcuffs behind his back, and advise the suspect he was under arrest.
“Due to being close to Mr. Shealy’s residence … his vehicle was then parked in his driveway, secured and the key was taken by me to be placed in his property at the jail.”
Shealy was charged at the Bartow County Jail.